Living in South Korea guide

Find out all you need to know to relocate and live in South Korea with the expat guide

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General information


Visas, passports and entry requirements
  • In South Korea, you can marry a foreigner or a South Korean national. The formalities depend on your nationality.

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  • Citizens from a hundred countries can stay in South Korea during 90 days with a valid passport. To stay for more than 90 days, you can opt for a tourist visa.

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Work visas, work permits, working holiday visas and residence permits
  • If you are seeking professional experience in South Korea, you can apply for a work visa, a business visa or a partnership visa.

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  • If you plan to study or make a family visit in Korea, you can apply for a visa at the South Korea Embassy in your country.

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  • You can apply for a Working Holiday Visa (WHV) if you want to work in South Korea for a year. It allows you to work and study in the country.

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Labour market, how to find a job
  • Incheon, one of South Korea's largest cities, has been attracting more and more foreign investment in various sectors over the years.

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  • The economy of the city of Gwangju, South Korea, is essentially based on automotive manufacturing and high technology industries.

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  • Ulsan, South Korea, has a quite developped economy which is essentially based on the automotive industry, shipbuilding and petrochemicals.

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  • Seoul's labor market is very open to expatriates. Many international and multinational firms have settled in this South Korean region.

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  • Daegu, South Korea's fourth largest city, has a great employment potential. Its several economic zones specialize in various sectors.

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How to rent a house or an apartment, leases and rental agreements
  • Different types of accommodations are available in the South Korean capital city. You can choose from studios, apartments, villas, etc, in Seoul.

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  • If you are moving to Busan, South Korea, you can rent an apartment, a house, or even a studio. Housing prices are affordable.

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  • South Korea has a variety of accommodation. You can rent a studio, apartment, villa or an individual house. Prices are rather affordable.

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Student visa, University registration
  • South Korea has many prestigious universities where you can pursue your studies. To register, you need to apply for a student visa.

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Health care

Public and private health systems
  • South Korea's health system is quite developed. However, you are advised to subscribe to a health and repatriation insurance before traveling.

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  • My experience in the public health system, Korea.

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Open and manage a bank account
  • To open a bank account in South Korea, visit any branch of the bank you have chosen and produce your passport, your work visa as well as your Alien Card.

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Tax system, income tax
  • There are various forms of taxes in South Korea: income tax, corporate tax and value added tax (VAT) which is levied at a general rate of 10 %.

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Train, bus, plane, car rental
  • Various means of transport are available in South Korea for different types of trips. You can choose from the plane, train, bus, taxi and ferry.

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  • This article is about taking the subway and bus system in Seoul Korea.

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  • My experiences of using the subway in 3 different cities of Korea.

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Driver's licence

Driving requirements
  • If you are enjoying a short stay in South Korea, you are authorized to drive with an international driver's license for up to one year.

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moving, formalities and useful tips
  • You are advised to hire international movers if you are planning to settle in South Korea. You should also subscribe to insurance for your belongings.

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  • Packing your stuff like a pro befor moving abroad !

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Phone line, internet provider, post office
  • If you already have a smart phone, but don't want to commit to a 2 year phone contract, there is an alternative--and it's a lot cheaper!

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  • South Korean telephone networks are highly developed. The main operators are now offering more modern services with 4G LTE +.

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  • South Korea has more than 38 million internet users. Most customers prefer broadband thanks to highly developed telecommunications network.

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Sports, leisure and cultural activities
  • Several types of sports are practiced in South Korea. You can choose among football, baseball, golf, or South Korean martial arts such as taekwondo...

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  • South Korea has a rich cultural and historical heritage you can discover during your expat experience there. You will also enjoy breathtaking scenery.

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  • If you are in South Korea with less than 5 years old children, you can enroll them to a child care center or a preprimary school. You can also entrust them to a nanny or babysitter.

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  • Your pet must be vaccinated against rabies and have a health card to be able to travel with you to South Korea. It must also wear an identification microchip.

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  • When moving to South Korea, you can import products such as tobacco and alcoholic drinks in small amounts without paying taxes. Fire arms are prohibited.

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  • Whether you are traveling or living in Korea, check out these travel apps that will make your stay easy and comfortable.

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Questions and answers about South Korea

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Linh Ha
Looking for fitness job in Busan
By Linh Ha
Are you happy in South Korea?
By Priscilla
Recommendations for TEFL courses
By Traveller61

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